Remember those goals you wrote down in January? In an earlier post, “The First 25 Days: How Are You Doing?” I wrote about the importance of doing an honest self-assessment and putting goals down on paper. As we’re into the 2nd quarter of the year, now is a good time to re-evaluate those goals and assess where you are.
In today’s post, however, I invite you to extend your self-assessment farther back than January. This requires a few difficult questions:
- What are the dreams and goals that you once set, perhaps years ago, that have not come to fruition?
- What are the lifeless areas?
- What are the activities and pursuits that once fed your spirit, in which you no longer participate?
- What are the areas of your life where you once had hope and now find yourself despondent?
Pursuing dreams and goals – particularly those we might have abandoned- takes true courage, intention, and a willingness to change.
Typically, our fears will become more powerful each time we avoid or back away from the situation we fear. Courage is developed by facing our fears and moving toward them rather than away.
Intention requires both a purpose and a plan, while still maintaining flexibility.
The past several blog posts have explored how to make small movements toward change. These steps involve changing the way we think, connecting to others, and letting go of the past. Our thoughts and feelings, no matter how powerful, aren’t always supported by facts. It is rare for healing and progress to take place in isolation. Be willing to separate previous failures or disappointments and place them firmly in the past, recognizing that these events, while painful, have no direct correlation to your future.
Whether you are pursuing dreams which have been dormant or remaining adamant about reaching your personal goals for the year, your increasing commitment might cause discomfort in others around you—in the workplace, your family, or personal sphere of influence. And while it is not your job to make others comfortable, there is potential for that discomfort to lead others to examine their own condition. Your genuine enthusiasm might have a positive influence on those around you to strive for more.
If you have a mentor or a few trusted individuals who support your goals, would you be willing to take a risk and share 1 one of those “lifeless areas?” Allow those you admire and trust to give you wise advice and help you navigate the next steps.
|Elicia McIntyre, a licensed clinical social worker, and graduate of Smith College School for Social Work, has 14 years’ experience providing counseling to adults, children and families in the Baltimore-Washington metro area. She has helped clients navigate life transitions, depression, anxiety and relationship difficulties. Elicia helps couples increase emotional intimacy, and foster healthy connections among family members. She has spent the past 3 years traveling nationally and overseas, providing education and intervention to military service members and their families on communication, stress management and building healthy relationships.|